On Thursday, the United States called for a vote on the United Nations Council to slap severe sanctions on North Korea for its recent launches of intercontinental ballistic missiles. Those missiles have the ability to deliver nuclear weapons. Moreover, the United States Mission to the U.N. has been working on the Security Council Resolution draft for the last some months.
The UN Security Council will vote on a push by Washington to toughen sanctions on the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea over its recent launches of ballistic missiles, a resolution that Beijing, which has a veto in the Security Council, has said wouldn’t resolve any issues. pic.twitter.com/5xr7hAAfBx
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On the other hand, North Korean neighbors such as Russia and China opposed the measures, and they demanded new dialogs and raised their voices to not more punishment for the North. The council president of the U.S. announced plans for the vote Wednesday. The vote outcome will depend on whether Russia and China use their veto power to block or abstain.
Chinese mission to the United Nations stated Wednesday evening that a U.S.-backed resolution wouldn’t solve any problems. According to the statement, in recent weeks, China suggested that the United States consider a presidential statement rather than a resolution, which many delegations endorsed but fell on deaf ears. There are several ways to de-escalate the tension, but they refuse to use them.
North Korea Launched Intercontinental Ballistic Missile
Approximately four hours after the announcement of the vote and release of the fourteen-page draft resolution by the U.S., South Korea reported that North Korea tested an intercontinental ballistic missile and two shorter-range missiles. The meeting followed Biden’s Asia tour Tuesday, which included his visits to Korea and Japan. He reaffirmed the U.S. commitment to defend its allies against the North Korean nuclear threat.
In a statement to Reuters, a U.S. official said the draft resolution would further restrict North Korea from advancing its unlawful weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missile programs and streamline sanctions implementation for those in need. Russia and China are putting their efforts to ease sanctions on humanitarian grounds telling a council meeting on the 11th of May that they sought new talks.
Thursday’s resolution would cut crude oil exports to North Korea from four million barrels per year to three million barrels. It would also cut exports of refined petroleum products from five hundred thousand barrels annually to three hundred seven thousand barrels. Likewise, it would ban North Korea from exporting mineral waxes, fuels, and oils.
Lazarus Group, which North Korea created, would also be frozen as part of the resolution. Among the activities of Lazarus are “data theft, cyberespionage, monetary heists, and destructive malware operations” against a large number of institutions, including military, government, manufacturing, publishing, retail, financial, media, and entertainment, as well as critical infrastructure firms.